What a difference a year makes. Last year at this time, Blue Suede Boi—the first short story I ever published—was being pulled from the virtual shelves. Why? My publisher closed its doors. Sad for all involved. And for me, it literally felt like a door closing on my publishing dreams. While I started 2015 with some shattered dreams and a story that I loved in digital bits and pieces, the experience prompted me to try something I never thought I’d have the guts to do: self-publishing. Now, I had two things most self-pubbed authors don’t have at least at first—amazing editing of my story and a fantastic cover artist/book designer.
So what came next was truly the hardest part: the faith. Which seems really fitting actually since Blue Suede Boi is a story about a girl who doesn’t really believe she can have what she wants. Kaia has a shoe store job to pay the bills but doesn’t have hope she’ll put her Masters degree to work in the stockroom. She had a girlfriend, but she always felt as though she was playing dress up in someone else’s fantasy. She had a crush, but she didn’t think the woman even knew she was alive.
But as they say when one door closes, another opens. And not just one door in my case.
After I self-pubbed Boi, I received published three more works, two of which were with publishers. Like the universe was sending me a message. Keep the faith. Keep writing. Keep submitting.
My goals for 2016 are simple: Keep writing. Keep submitting. Keep the faith.
Like Kaia, you never know when the universe is about to send you a message. In Kaia’s case, the message came with a platinum blond Mohawk and wore blue suede shoes.
Here’s a little excerpt of Kaia’s story, Blue Suede Boi. Feel free to comment on the excerpt below or share some of your goals for the new year!
Blue Suede Boi
Amanda reached for a black leather chukka with neon green contrast stitching. One of my favorite fantasies sneaked into my head: Amanda on her back, me straddled over her with my ass in the air. I would lick and nibble the tight muscles of her middle, my nipples teasing against her firm stomach.
“Tell me why they don’t make shoes these cool for women?” she asked, as if I might really have insight on behalf of the shoe industry—me, a lowly clerk.
“I don’t think most women would wear a shoe that cool. But if they fit you, what does it matter who they were designed for?” I took the chukka from her hand, careful to just barely brush her fingers. My hand was already trembling a little, and I was probably sweating. “This one?”
“Yes, but I’d like to keep looking.”
“Sure. Do you want something in particular?”
“I have a date.” She dug her hands deep into the pockets of her worn skinny jeans. “So I need something really hot.”
“Oh.” I’m sure I didn’t hide my disappointment. A date. Of course, right. Amanda, the woman whose pheromones could turn straight girls gay from a distance of twenty miles—of course, a date. I dialed the intensity of my smile down a few more degrees. Shoes, focus on the shoes, not on Amanda’s nipples, which were hardening into peaks against the seams of what looked like a sports bra under her T-shirt. I swallowed. “Okay, then. Do you have an outfit you want to match the shoes with, or are you just looking around?”
“Yeah, I have an outfit.”
“What do you plan to wear?” Amanda’s white T-shirt was tissue thin, her tight grey jeans broken-in and well-worn. All boi. I gestured toward her, focusing my attention away from Amanda’s now fully erect nipples. “Something like what you have on now?”
“No, no, not this.” She tugged at the hem of her shirt. “I have some sweet tuxedo pants, and I was thinking a purple dress shirt or maybe a tuxedo vest with a tank top if it’s warm.”
“Tuxedo pants?” I imagined her long, slim legs in dress pants, her hair styled into spikes liked I’d seen her wear before. Even if she was shopping for a date with someone else, just thinking about her dressed up like she’d been when we first met made little tremors of arousal bank between my legs. “Okay, what color tuxedo pants? Just black?”
She smiled. “Actually no. This color. Kinda like what you’re wearing.”
I lifted the edge of my navy blue mini skirt toward her. “Like this?”
“Kinda, yeah.” She stepped closer and reached for the stretchy knit fabric of my skirt.
Amanda’s long fingers brushed the softest part of inner my thigh, her hand deliberately—deliberately—stroking me with a quick but firm touch.
“What do you think would go with this color blue?” she asked.
I suppressed a deep arousal-soaked breath. She was so close, I could have smelled the product in her hair—if I let myself. My pulse raced and I tried to ignore the whisper of her fingers at the hemline of my skirt. She could not be flirting with me, could she? Focus on the shoes.
I scanned the display. I felt dizzy. An electric warmth spread between her hand and my leg. Flirt?
I stood on the tips of my denim high tops, stretching to reach a pair of blue suede oxfords. “Do you like these?”
“Definitely. Can I try them?”
“Yeah, and the chukkas, too?”
She laughed, running a hand through that bleached panel of hair. “Is that what they’re called? Yeah, those too. Thanks, Kaia.”
I walked back to the stockroom, pausing to check my reflection in one of the security mirrors. Amanda. I couldn’t believe she remembered me. What were the odds that she would walk into my shoe store? Not really mine, of course. But was this just a coincidence? I finished my master’s degree nearly eight months ago and still hadn’t found a job. Well, a real job. I had worked this shoe gig all through grad school part-time. I tried to remember what she might have known about me, how she might have known where to find me.
I’d first met Amanda when I was dating Zen, and yes, that’s really her name. Zen was a lawyer, and she loved having me on her arm at parties but she sucked at anything more than lavish dates. Amanda worked at Zen’s law firm, doing something—IT maybe? I’d met Amanda at the firm’s holiday party. I was dolled up in an outfit Zen had picked out. I grimaced thinking about Zen. She had embarrassed me, trotting me out as eye candy. She called me her modern day Ann-Margret. I have natural red hair and a thing for thick wings of black eyeliner, sort of a retro glam vibe. I’m a redhead who likes wearing red, but I remember fidgeting in the strapless dress bought to match Zen’s burgundy shirt and holiday tie. The tacky bridesmaid-y dress, the coordinating colors…the whole scene was so not me. Zen and I lasted only about three months. The holiday party had been the last straw.
I’d been standing alone waiting for Zen to get drinks from the bar. Amanda and her date, a crazy-hot black girl dressed almost as flashy as I was, were the only other lesbian couple. I noticed them right away, the way Amanda’s hand hovered at the curve above her date’s ass, her brilliant-white mohawk a stark contrast to the businesslike haircuts of most of the partygoers. Amanda owned her swagger. She laughed and touched her date, tossing back drinks as though the firm event was just a pre-party warm up before a night of athletic and intense fucking.
I’d felt so jealous. Jealous as fuck. Zen was a confident butch, a half- Korean girl with a close-cut boy’s haircut and a stylish andro wardrobe. We talked, but we had zero chemistry. She was only interested in how I looked to other people. I let her take me out, pay for everything, hoping things might turn into more…but they never did. At that party, I felt sick watching the chemistry spark off Amanda and her date. I wanted to take home that gorgeous boi and fuck her senseless, grab that white-hot hair between my fingers and tug her face to my tits. I would never have anything close to that with Zen. That night, I knocked back too many glasses of wine and stared at Amanda from wherever Zen and I were—peering around the servers carrying cocktail snacks, running into Amanda in the ladies’ room. I’m sure I looked like a stalker, and I’d felt like the nerd at the high school dance with a lovesick crush on a popular athlete.
Zen had wanted to take me to her place after the holiday party. As she drove her sporty two-seater, she kept one hand under my dress, trying to stroke my pussy through my panties and teasing me when I didn’t get wet and encourage her.
“What’s up, baby?” She pulled her hand away and put both on the steering wheel. “Let’s go back to my place. I want you to sit on my face and come wearing that dress. You look so hot tonight, Kaia.”
I asked her to just take me home, told her I wasn’t feeling well. I hugged her before I went inside alone, knowing I would never see her again. I didn’t even feel like explaining. My heart sank and I felt alone and angry. Stupid candy-cane striped bow tie. Zen wasn’t a bad woman. She just wasn’t Amanda. I’d settled for Zen-relationships for too long. I wanted an Amanda of my own…that Amanda.
I got off that night, still wearing the bought-for-me red dress. I pushed my fingers deep inside my mouth, wetting them until they dripped. I rubbed my slick fingertips over my clit, arousal swelling my nub as I thought about how Amanda’s tongue would feel. I pictured her mohawk tickling my thighs as she licked me and imagined the feel of those spikes of sexy hair brushing against my chin as she sucked my nipples. I moaned so loud I probably woke my roommate, and a small squirt of come trickled down my fingers. I rolled over and grabbed my pillow for comfort, trying not to imagine what Amanda must have been doing with her date at that very moment.
Somehow, three months later, Amanda was in my shoe store. Shopping for a date, yes. But she’d remembered me. Maybe she had remembered the self-deprecating way I said where I worked and that I was a student when Zen had introduced us.
“I work at The Shoe Lot,” I’d joked. “Shoes at mall prices without the mall atmosphere.”
“Kaia is a graduate student,” Zen had said in a voice that suggested she expected Amanda to be impressed.
“School, school is great.” Amanda had shaken my hand. “And everybody needs shoes, right?”
“You know me, a closet full of fuck-me shoes,” Zoe, the date, had laughed.
Embarrassment and envy stampeded through my belly and rushed to my cheeks in a heady sprint. I felt lightheaded, conjuring a vision of Amanda and this sexpot tussling in the sheets…complete with fuck-me shoes.
“Classy, ladies. This is a work party.” Zen had shaken her head and grabbed my hand, towing me toward the managing partner and his wife.
The backsides of Zen’s and my coordinating holiday clothes could hardly have been a memorable introduction. Still, Amanda was here, shopping for shoes at my place of employment. For a few minutes, I had her attention. Whether she had a date with someone else or not, I smoothed my red hair and straightened out my side part. I grabbed sheer, pearly white lipstick from my purse and rolled just enough on my lips so they shined. Couldn’t hurt.
I quickly gathered her sizes and went back to the floor.
“Here.” She took the boxes from my arms.
“I don’t mind; it’s actually my job.” Chivalrous.
“Okay, but you’re not going to try to put the shoes on me, are you? That totally creeps me out.” She unlaced her perfectly worn-in oxfords.
“No, that’s fine. In fact, I have another customer I can check on. Try these on, and I’ll come back.”
An older woman asked for several styles of gel-sole walking shoes, so I ran back to the stockroom. After I delivered those, I checked on Amanda. She seemed to be thoroughly engaged, walking in front of the mirror and testing out the length of the toe.
“How are you doing?” I kneeled down, pulled the chukkas from the packing, and loosened the neon green laces. “How do those feel?”
“They feel amazing. What would you think about these with navy tuxedo pants?”
“Wow. These will be gorgeous, I think you’ll look great.” I imagined the shoes, on her feet, with the pants, and pressed my lips together. In my mind, I tugged the tuxedo pants from her hips.
“So what about you?” Amanda sat on the bench seat and handed me the blue suede oxfords, a really sharp pair with raw-cut black laces and black soles. She could have put the shoes on the floor or in the box, but she handed them to me. This time I didn’t avoid her touch.
Her grey eyes simmered with heat; her lashes were almost as pale as her long, sexy mohawk. She blinked as she held out the shoes.
“Me?” I took the shoes with one hand and boldly, with delight and desire tripping through my belly, let my fingers linger on hers.
“Yes, you. What are you gonna wear? Or do you want to surprise me when I pick you up?”